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“The best place to stay in Tonga”
Review of Reef Resort

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Reef Resort
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed July 18, 2010

My husband and I arrived from Auckland, desperately in need of some R&R from our corporate jobs. We were greeted by a friendly Tongan driver (complete with flower leis) at the airport in Vava'u who took us to the boat where Tim (owner of Reef Resort) loaded us on and off we went for a short 15 minute trip to the secluded little slice of paradise on Kapa Island.

Teresa was waiting on the dock, with Jessie (corgi dog) ready for our arrival. After getting settled in the lovely beach front fale (#3), we were handed tropical cocktails and invited to relax in the gorgeous living/dining fale. Instant relaxation and just a precursor to the fabulous time ahead.

We stayed for 7 nights and had the most delicious meals -- I have asked Teresa to write a cookbook!!! Also, see the other reviews that comment -- honestly, it was fantastic. My birthday happened to occur when we were there, and for that we were served fresh crays (huge), delicious fresh fish bought from the fishermen who visit the resort, salads, amazing wine and a beautiful tropical banana cake... fantastic.

The fales all have air conditioning and ceiling fans, and ensuite hot/cold shower and toilet. Each has its own deck with lounge and dining chairs -- so you can be as isolated as you want, or go to the clubhouse fale to read and join in conversation if you desire.

They have a fully stocked bar with mixers and liquor, and drinks are reasonably priced at around NZ$5.50 for a beer and NZ$10.50 for a cocktail. Definitely plan to have your meals there!

On a couple of evenings, Tim and Teresa took us 'out' to Neiafu for the Wednesday night fakaleti show and to another resort for drinks and a little change of scene. We went into Neiafu for the market on a Saturday, and Teresa helped negotiate a great deal on some lovely handmade place mats that are fantastic.

I recommend going on a day trip for snorkelling and possibly whale watching/swimming (late July - October) with Dive Vavau and take in the Mariner's Cave and Swallows cave experiences. Also, the Wednesday night fakeleti show in Neiafu is not to be missed!

Walk from the Reef Resort to the other side of the island for a beautiful picnic on the most gorgeous horseshoe shaped beach -- not a soul in sight.

I can't recommend Reef enough, and told everyone I saw when we went to Matafonua Lodge (Haapai) that they must go -- even if it's only for a meal. BTW, Matafonua Lodge is lovely as well -- see other review.

Overall, Reef Resort is world-class, intimate, not a "resort" but rather a perfectly proportioned hideaway in the south pacific. It does cost more than the others, but it is so far ahead in terms of quality, gentility and class that you will not be disappointed. We will be back!!!

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank texankiwi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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90 - 96 of 130 reviews

Reviewed July 18, 2010

What a fantastic place to stay. The rooms were wonderful, lots of room and great showers.

And the food.... I don't think I ever eaten as much in my life and it was all really good. The service was great, never felt like we were being intruded on, but our drinks were always full.

  • Stayed: June 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank flips1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2010

Fabulous accommodation, fantastic company and bloody awesome food. By god woman, I haven't stopped talking about your cooking to all of my friends back in Sydney!

- Emely

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank EmelySydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2009

Only stayed 1 night but it was enough to make me realise I will return! Had been on a boat sailing around the paradise that is Vava'u for 7 days so this was the perfect way to end the trip.

Therese a wonderful host, the food really is as good as everyone says. The setting is sublime, the facilities 5 star, the cats are gems as are the dogs and the occasional pig.

Give yourself a treat and tell all your friends. This really is the perfect getaway.

  • Stayed: October 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank lloydois
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 11, 2009

The Reef Resort was pure luxury in Tonga's remote Vava'u islands, having been built I think the year before we stayed there? The bungalows were beautiful with modern bathrooms and furnishings. Meals were excellent in the large restaurant that also contained a sitting area with comfy sofas, an outside deck, and a little bar. Tim & Theresa catered to our needs and were kind and eager to please. Having come from a more rustic location prior, the Reef Resort was simple luxury (although more expensive than some other places) and did not need mosquito nets, as the windows in the bungalows were screened and had modern walls and roofs.

Our downfall was that it rained all except for one afternoon that we stayed there which curtailed some of our snorkeling & beach activities, but of course that can't be blamed on the resort, which was a comfy place to relax & lament the lack of suntanning.

  • Stayed: September 2008, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank SFOFlyingTiger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 20, 2009

I've been living in the South Pacific for a few years now and have traveled to many of the islands. This was my first trip to Tonga however. While teh main purpose of our trip was to swim with the whales, we wanted a nice place to come "home" to at the end of the day. And the Reef Resort more than delivered.

The resort is in a lovely location with spectacular views of crystal clear waters and islands. The bures/vales are some of the nicest I have come across. The food is delicious and plentiful. The owners are down to earth, engaging and really run a top notch operation. There is nothing you'll want for at the Reef. They arranged everything for us--whale watching, diving, trips into town. There is no request that wasn't fulfilled.

It's a small place and it's easy to get to know the other guests or you can have a private getaway. It's what you make of it.

The snorkeling which is right off the resort is spectacular. Tons of fish and a stunning array of coral.

The drinks are a bit on the expensive side, so I recommend stopping at duty free before heading to the resort. They're really no more expensive than at other resorts of this type, but it's always better to bring your own.

If your planning a trip to Tonga, definitely put this gem on your list. You won't regret it.

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank AmerExPat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 5, 2009

Theresa and Tim have got to be the best hosts ever! I felt like hey! They are my best friends. What can I truly say? Fantastic springs to mind. As much as I have travelled the world I have never ever come across such wonderful hosts! A bonus here Theresa has got to be the best cook her food is just so ... I reckon she has kidnapped Jamie Oliver and held him in her kitchen Theresa's food is exceptionally wonderful . The accomodation was truly first class. This has really been a dream holiday thanks to Tim and Theresa's hospitality nothing is too much for them and they work around you. only downfall... I wished I had booked another week!

  • Stayed: August 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank jackiebiba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Reef Resort

Address: Kapa Island | Private Bag 11, Neiafu, Tonga
Location: Tonga > Vava'u Islands > Neiafu
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Specialty Lodging in Neiafu
Price Range: $231 - $570 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Reef Resort is a wonderful, boutique resort located on a tranquil island in beautiful Vava'u. The resort has four stunning bungalows (fales) each with air conditioning, private decks, walk-in showers, tea/coffee making facilities, refrigerator and the most amazing sea views. Finished to a high standard with tasteful furnishings and a modern feel, The crystal clear waters provide brilliant snorkelling and one of the best snorkelling spots in Vava'u, the Japanese Gardens, is just off the beach. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Reef Resort Tonga/Neiafu

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